Blundering police officers raid wrong home in Wembley

Richard Soden said he was without a secure front door for more than a week

Richard Soden said he was without a secure front door for more than a week - Credit: Archant

A vulnerable Wembley man was given a rude awakening as blundering police officers smashed their way into the wrong house during a drugs raid.

A vulnerable Wembley man was given a rude awakening as blundering police officers smashed their way into the wrong house during a drugs raid.

Officers rammed their way through the home of Richard Soden, of Alexander Court, in Empire Way, last week, expecting to find evidence of drugs.

Mr Soden, who was woken by the door being smashed, suddenly found police surrounding his bed and he was handcuffed.

He said he was asleep before being awoken by “a loud crash” and claims he was pinned down before officers placed him in handcuffs.

Depression

Realising their mistake, police soon exited the property, leaving the door on the ground, according to the 57-year-old.

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The Times understands that police were supposed to raid another property located on the floor above.

The incident could not have come at a worse time for Mr Soden, who suffers from depression and had been granted leave from Park Royal Mental Health Centre, in Central Way, the previous day.

He said: “When you get out from a mental health hospital after being there for two or three weeks, it shakes you up.”

Adding that he has been unable to sleep properly, he said: “The door is not safe and I kept hearing noises outside. I get up to make sure nobody is outside to knock my door down again.”

He continued: “They [police] have not contacted me once, not even to apologise. I have huge respect for the police but I am upset by this situation.”

Mr Soden was left without a properly functioning door, secured only by padlocks, for more than a week.

Tim Robert, chairman of the residents group in Alexander Court, said: “I am pretty disgusted with what he has been through.

“I understand that mistakes are made but the least the police could do is fix the door.”

The incident has been referred to the Directorate of Professional Standards and the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

A Brent police spokesman told the Times: “We can confirm police in Brent received a formal complaint from an occupant at an address in Alexander Court on Friday.

“Whilst the matter is being investigated, it would be inappropriate to comment at this stage.”